June 15, 2014
June 15, 2014
June 18, 2014
24.1197.1 - 24.1197.12
The Development of an Instrument for Assessing Individual Ethical Decisionmaking in Project-based Design Teams: Integrating Quantitative and Qualitative MethodsEthics and the development of ethical reasoning in engineering students is an important part ofengineering education and the accreditation criteria of ABET. Project-based design has become amore prominent pedagogy within current engineering education and offers opportunities whereethical considerations concerning technology, society, people and the environment often arise.Engineering ethicists in project-based design experiences have increasingly realized thesignificance of introducing ethical decisionmaking to engineering students. However, a majorchallenge is the lack of effective tools for assessing students’ ethical decisionmaking strategies,skills, and developmental processes in project-based design teams.This paper introduces the development of an instrument for assessing individual ethicaldecisionmaking in a project-based design context. First, we present the ethical theoreticalframework (e.g. Kohlberg’s moral development theory) and practical background (e.g. micro andmacro ethics in engineering) for the development of the instrument. Second, we describe theprocess in which the instrument has been developed. This process was inspired by the successfulstructure of the DIT2 (Defining Issues Test, Version 2) but tailored to the specific context ofproject-based engineering design. For example, our instrument consists of design ethicsscenarios that require students to make situational ethical judgments and then rate and rank aseries of items which they think are crucial for decisionmaking.In this paper, we also introduce the validation processes of our instrument by means of statisticalvalidation, expert review, and qualitative methods including non-participatory observations andsemi-structured interviews for triangulation. Finally, we discuss some limitations or conditionsof our instrument and propose suggestions for further research with the aim of improving thepractical effectiveness of the instrument in assessing students’ individual ethical decisionmakingin project-based design environment.Keywords: Ethical decisionmaking; Moral development; Ethical assessment; Mixed methods.
Zhu, Q., & Zoltowski, C. B., & Feister, M. K., & Buzzanell, P. M., & Oakes, W. C., & Mead, A. D. (2014, June), The Development of an Instrument for Assessing Individual Ethical Decisionmaking in Project-based Design Teams: Integrating Quantitative and Qualitative Methods Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--23130
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